PhD/Postdoc Vacancies

PhD in Transfer Learning for Text Classification (Amazon Alexa Fellowship)

Appplications are invited for a fully funded 3-year PhD studentship in Natural Language Processing and Machine Learning at the Department of Computer Science, University of Sheffield commencing in 2019.

Training deep learning models for Natural Language Processing (NLP) tasks such as text classification and question answering typically involve estimating millions of parameters. These models are data intensive and require access to large annotated corpora. However, it is not always the case that enough resources will be available beforehand for many domains or languages. In addition, it is time-consuming and expensive to acquire for labelled data from crowdsourced or expert annotations.
This project will focus on developing transfer learning methods for repurposing and reusing deep learning models trained on high-resource languages and domains for text classification in low-resource ones.
The project will be co-supervised and in close collaboration with Alexa scientists in Amazon Research Cambridge, UK.

Application deadline:  1st February 2019

Supervisor: Dr. Nikolaos Aletras (Department of Computer Science)

Start Date: 2019 (flexible)


The general eligibility requirements are:

How to apply

Funding Notes

The studentship will commence in 2019 (flexible). The studentship will cover tuition fees at the EU/UK rate (Overseas students could complement the difference in tuition fees with their own/other funding sources) and provide an annual maintenance stipend at standard Research Council rates (£14,777 in 2018/19) for 3 years.

About the Amazon Alexa Fund Fellowship Scheme

The Amazon Alexa Fund is establishing an Alexa Fund Fellowship program to support academic institutions leading the charge in the fields of text-to-speech (TTS), natural language understanding (NLU), automatic speech recognition (ASR), conversational artificial intelligence (AI), and other related engineering fields. The goal of the Alexa Fund Fellowship program is to educate students about voice technology and empower them to create the next big thing.

About NLP at the University of Sheffield

The Natural Language Processing Research Group, established in 1993, is one of the largest and most successful language processing groups in the UK and has a strong global reputation.

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